How to Winterize Your Car in 7 Steps

September 21st, 2018 by

Winter tire driving in slush

Whether you’re planning a road trip or just trying to survive your commute this winter, learning how to winterize your car is something all sensible drivers should do. It isn’t as hard as you might think!


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  • Check the Battery
  • Change Wiper Blades and Refill Fluid
  • Check Tire Pressure
  • Check the Antifreeze
  • Create a Winter Emergency Car Kit
  • Check the Oil and Change the Viscosity
  • Check Belts and Hoses

Follow Our Winter Car Tips to Stay Safe When It Turns Cold

  • Check the Battery: Cold weather puts additional stress on your battery by slowing chemicals reactions. Get a battery load test to see if you need a replacement, and check for any corrosion.
  • Change Wiper Blades and Refill Fluid: A combination of winter precipitation, freezing temperatures, and road salt can strain your wiper blades and use up wiper fluid. Blades are only good for one year, so the start of winter is a good time to replace them. Top off your wiper fluid reservoir with fluid that has a low freezing temperature.
  • Check Tire Pressure: Air pressure falls during colder weather. Ensure tires are properly inflated to maintain traction and minimize friction.
  • Check the Antifreeze. Your antifreeze/water mixture should be around 50:50 to prevent the coolant in your radiator from freezing. Get an inexpensive anti-freeze tester, or have it checked professionally.
  • Create a Winter Emergency Car Kit: Breakdowns grow more hazardous as temperatures plummet. Put together a winter kit with food, blankets, and other emergency supplies.
  • Check the Oil and Change the Viscosity: Engine oil is less effective when it’s cold, so check that your vehicle has enough and, at your next oil change, consider asking about switching your regular oil for a low viscosity brand to help avoid problems in the future.
  • Check Belts and Hoses: Belts and hoses weaken when hit by cold temperatures. Check both for any signs of wear and tear, and get them replaced if necessary. All it takes is one snapped belt to see you stranded on a cold day, waiting on the side of the road for a tow truck.

Find Out More About How to Prepare Your Car For Winter

Whether you need to know how to fix a car with no heat or what to do if your car won’t start, the CarHop team has the winter car tips you’re looking for! We can also teach you how to spruce up your interior with a DIY car air freshener! For a wide array of used vehicles already in perfect condition for winter cold and summer heat, visit your local CarHop location.